What is a pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA)?

A pressure sensitive adhesive is one which bonds on contact with a surface to form a bond of immediately useful strength, without applied heat or other means of activation and with minimal applied pressure.

A pressure sensitive adhesive:

  • Is aggressively and permanently tacky/sticky
  • Adheres with pressure – finger or hand
  • Does not require activation by water, solvent or heat
  • May exert a strong holding force (ability to carry a load)
  • Has sufficient cohesiveness and elasticity

Common types include rubber, acrylic and silicone adhesives. Different types have definite advantages over others and no single type will do every job.

For more terms view our glossary.